Golden Axe, in its Amiga version, was probably one of the first games where I got to play as a distinctly female character. Sure, there was Metroid, but there really is no comparison between the NES game and the huge, detailed Frazetta-esque sprites of the arcade game and its 16 bit ports. I probably played as Gilius at first, but soon discovered that Tyris was devastating with her screen-filling dragon magic. That she was running around in a tiny white bikini wasn’t a factor just yet.
So even though I’ve rarely played any of the Golden Axe games in a good thirty years, Tyris Flare is rather special as a game character, and I jumped on the preorder of this brand new figure from Storm Collectibles. The company makes a ton of game figures, but I haven’t had the opportunity to get any until now. She did end up being delayed for month after month, not to mention that she came packed with a blue dragon which bumped up the price even more, plus of course shipping and import fees. So while I’m not absolutely certain whether she was worth the cost and wait, let’s take a look.
The first impression is that she’s remarkably big. I’m used to the Figma/Figuarts scale but she towers over those figures. The sculpt is detailed and she is properly muscular as a warrior princess, although there isn’t really much detail there to begin with. Her face is gorgerous and very sharply painted, even though it’s relatively simple. With plenty of articulation there are seams all over her, but Storm have at least hidden a few alongside the edges of her clothes.
The material is a rather solid hard plastic with some parts made of softer rubber, including the hips and the chest. This improves the articulation a lot without leaving gaps, and she has double-jointed shoulders so that she can bring her arms closer, although obviously her chest restricts her a bit. The knees also have double joints and bend very well, and everything seems solid so far. I’m a little worried about the long term durability of the rubber parts, but that’s a problem for future me. I think the neck is rather limited though, as she can’t really look upwards, and the standard straight hair gets caught on her shoulders.
Speaking of her hair, I was a bit surprised at how red it is, considering the artwork of Tyris made her a rather generic Frazetta blonde and the in-game sprite was more light brown. There’s two different sets of hair that plug into her face, one straight and one more wind-blown. It’s preferable to take the head off the body before replacing it, since you need to squish it into the back part of the hair. She also has two faces, one solemn and one angry. For additional posing, she has five sets of hands: fists, holding, grasping, open and pointing. Aside from her sword, that’s it for accessories for Tyris. She is fairly stable on her own, but could have used a stand. However, a regular Figuarts stand works well for her if you get one with a claw to hold her, even if she is larger than those figures.
But there is of course a rather huge accessory all of its own: the blue dragon. There was a similar red dragon that came with Ax Battler in this series, and getting to ride various beasts was a big part of the game so it’s not entirely a way to bump up the price. This one is substantial and pretty heavy. It would definitely have needed a stand, though, as it’s rather front heavy. If you balance it on its tail, it stands on its own but just barely. There’s also a large flame that loosely sits in its mouth and works to hold it up a bit. The dragon is solid, chunky plastic with the saddle and reins a soft rubber. There is limited articulation that isn’t too useful. I would have liked the neck to move around, but it would be hard to do without a ton of seams. An additional note is that the dragon’s tail is loose in the box and needs to be attached by the ball joint, and I had to warm up the figure with warm water to be able to push it in.
Obviously Tyris can ride it. There’s no specific pegs to hold her, but her feet can reach the stirrups and she can also hold the reins, and the rubber seems to add enough friction so that she doesn’t just slide off. While the dragon isn’t too interesting on its own, objectively neither is Tyris. But riding a dragon is very much Golden Axe and very classic fantasy and the combined pair look pretty magnificent.
Overall Tyris Flare is a very nice figure that is quite worth the asking price, although maybe not the costs of importing it. She is solid and has good posability, and she doesn’t feel quite as delicate as a Figma so she’s more fun to play around with. I might have a look at additional Storm Collectible figures, as this made a good first impression.